Countryside infra, strict RH Law implementation could help reduce poverty — Duterte admin

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More infrastructures in the countryside and vigorous family planning implementation among poor families could very well result to the reduction of poverty rate in the country in the next six years.

In a press conference at the sides of the economic forum called for by President-elect Rodrigo Duterte here in Davao City Monday, incoming Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez said 80% of the existing PPP projects are concentrated in and around Metro Manila.

Dominguez said that under the Duterte administration, they would be prioritizing projects that would be implemented outside of Metro Manila thereby creating more jobs in the rural areas.

He said that an estimated 10 million of unemployed or underemployed individuals in the rural areas would directly benefit from projects to be implemented outside of Metro Manila.

Incoming Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said that they will be allocating around one trillion pesos for infrastructure projects in the six remaining months of this year. This, he said, would all be implemented simultaneously so they could all be started or completed by the end of this year.

Records from the Department of Budget and Management showed that a total of P650.27 billion in notices of cash allocation (NCA) were issued as of April. The amount represent only around 31 percent of the P2.071 trillion budget for departments and officer as well as special purpose funds for their immediate needs.

The total budget for 2016 is P3.002 trillion but P930.7 billion of it is in the form of automatic appropriations used mainly for debt servicing, retirement and pension for state workers and revenue share of local government units.

Aside from implementing infra projects in the countryside, National Economic and Development Authority incoming director general Ernesto Pernia said that vigorous implementation of the Reproductive Health Law would also have a great effect on poverty reduction.

He said that if poor families would only stick to a good family planning, they have estimated a reduction of the poverty rate by at least 3% of the present 26%. More could be deducted from the poverty rate if mothers who are already liberated from their child-caring duties would be able to join the workforce.

Pernia termed it as a “synergistic effect”. A synergistic effect is an effect arising between two or more factors that produces an effect greater than the sum of their individual effects.

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